“One of the best” is the consensus among experts regarding the Reebok Nano X. As befits a Nano, it is a versatile cross-trainer which is “not too great at anything, just pretty good at everything.” It is agreed to be a “one-stop-shop” for workouts “IF you are not running.”
Contrary to the brand’s statement, the X is not as “runnable” as the experts have hoped.
versatile gym and CrossFit shoe
superb stability for lifting
secure fit and heel support
solid lateral support
heavy and bulky
not for extra wide feet
stiff for jumps
frail on rope climbs
Who should (not) buy the Reebok Nano X
The Nano X is best for functional fitness and CrossFit-style workouts. It also works for an ordinary gym session with lots of lifting and a little bit of everything.
“It’s basically an extra Nano 9,” “expect something very similar,” “both shoes are solid” - these quotes summarize the minor differences between the two. Here is the detailed overview:
Enhanced heel hold and padding
Increased midfoot support
Toecage material no longer bunches up
More fashion-forward design
1 oz (30 g) heavier: 14.1 oz / 400 g over 13 oz / 370 g
Narrower toebox (Nano 9 was better for wide feet)
Which one is better? It's a tie. The experts refrain from leaning towards either Nano 9 or X. It's the details that make the difference, even in the pricetag, so it's up to you to choose.
Blown-up heel collar - the wow factor
This part of the shoe received the most comments and compliments. Extending high up the ankle, this extra-cushioned, foamy pillow makes the trainer feel more like a mid-top sneaker or even a basketball shoe.
An unusual feature for a cross-trainer, experts found plenty of benefits in it:
locks the heel and ankle “inside a cage of memory foam”
helps slide the foot into the shoe without unlacing it
keeps the heel stable during twists, turns, and jumps
prevents heel slip
Weightlifting - Top-level stability
“If there’s any reason to pick up a pair of Nano X, it should be to lift in,” says one of the experts, summarizing the Nano X’s strongest point. It is also where all that extra bulk and heaviness work for the benefit.
The reviewers swear by the shoe’s performance in the following:
They describe their experience lifting in the Nano X as “rock-solid,” “stable,” “planted,” “stuck to the ground,” etc.
Jumping - Is a No
Those who have put the shoe through burpees, box jumps, double unders, and skipping admit that it would not be their first pick because of the heaviness. As one expert points, “you can definitely feel the bulk of the shoes.”
It is flexible enough for mountain climbers, planks, jumping lunges, and the like but is still on the stiffer side compared to an average trainer.
Where it shines is lateral support and traction. The sturdy sidewalls “keep you securely on the footbed,” while the outsole “grips everything”: wet concrete, wood floors, carpet, asphalt.”
Running - Far from “runnable”
None of the experts had a pleasant experience running in the Nano X: the majority doesn’t recommend it for over 2-3 km, while some couldn’t even get through 1 km in the shoe. The reason being its stiff midsole and overall heaviness.
Rope climbing - Not good
Very few reviewers were able to test the Nano X on the rope. But those who did were disappointed in durability:
one reported the rope guard coming loose
another complained about the upper materials fraying more easily than expected.
All-day wear - Fine
Some of the experts eagerly emphasized the shoe’s comfort for casual wear. One mentioned spending “days walking around in the Nano X with no problems,” while another has been wearing it for “dog walks 2-3 miles” each time.
Along with the sneaker-y style and plenty of vibrant colors, this cross-trainer can make for a foot companion even outside the gym.
Size and fit
All experts warn that the Nano X is narrower and more form-fitting than the Nano 9. This is due to the extra padding and overlays throughout the upper.
However, it remains true to size and offers ample space in the toebox compared to most trainers. So the advice is to go with your normal shoe size. Going a size up is likely to feel long.
Those who compared the Nano X to Nike Metcon 6 find both shoes to be solid all-arounders that shine in weightlifting. But some nuances give each one an edge:
slightly wider in the toebox
more padding and support across the upper
better for all-day wear
lighter: 363 g over 400 g in a men’s US size 10
better for rope climbs
has Hyperlift inserts: increase the heel height by 8 mm (men’s) / 6 mm (women’s)
No more CrossFit branding?
The end of Reebok’s 10-year contract with the CrossFit brand is signified by the elimination of CF branding from the Nano X. It was already minimal on the Nano 9, but this time around, it’s just a hint:
a barely noticeable Delta on the rubber toe protector
a hidden one on the insole inside the shoe
Reebok’s signature Vector is now taking up the most prominent parts of the shoe.
Nick is a powerlifter who believes cardio comes in the form of more heavy ass squats. Based on over 1.5 million lifts done at competitions, his PRs place him as an elite level powerlifter. His PRs have him sitting in the top 2% of bench presses (395 lbs), top 3% of squats (485 lbs) and top 6% of deadlifts (515 lbs) for his weight and age. His work has been featured on Forbes, Bodybuilding.com, Elite Daily and the like. Collaborating along the way with industry leaders like Michael Yessis, Mark Rippetoe, Carlo Buzzichelli, Dave Tate, Ray Williams, and Joel Seedman.